Pesto makes everything better, and this creamy and herbaceous pesto chicken salad is no exception. It’s the perfect way to jazz up lunch–sandwich it between your favorite bread, or eat it with a spoon. You’re going to love this chicken pesto salad, and here’s why.
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This pesto chicken salad comes together with just a few ingredients–each of which are packed with flavor and shouldn’t be skipped! Here’s what to gather:
- The chicken – Use whatever cooked chicken you have on hand or can make quickly–poached chicken is my chicken salad go to. You can also use rotisserie chicken for even more flavor (inspired by my rotisserie chicken salad). Canned chicken salad will also work, just drain the chicken well so the sauce doesn’t get watery. Or leftover chicken (such as Tuscan chicken or caprese chicken).
- The dressing – Pesto, mayonnaise, and lemon juice combine for an herbaceous and creamy dressing that’s absolutely irresistible. Taste test your pesto before mixing it in to make sure you like the taste. Greek yogurt can be used instead of mayonnaise for a lower fat alternative–check out my Greek yogurt chicken salad for inspo.
- The salt + pepper – The amount added will vary depending on the pesto you use. Start with a little and add more based on your personal preference–from my experience, salt is definitely a welcomed addition to this chicken pesto salad.
Variations + Tweaks
This pesto chicken salad is delicious as is, but if you’re looking for something a little different, consider:
- Turning it into a lettuce based salad, by dishing sliced chicken over a bed of lettuce, with pesto drizzled on top. Check out my pesto salmon to see how I like doing this.
- Swap the protein – this salad can be made with eggs (yes, pesto egg salad!), and tuna, you could even turn it into a canned salmon salad if you fancy.
- Add other vegetables such as celery, fresh tomatoes, or even bell peppers.
How to Make Pesto Chicken Salad
Making this pesto chicken salad is as easy as chopping and mixing. If you aren’t too hungry, try allowing the chicken salad to sit in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before serving, so the flavors have time to marry.
How to Serve
This pesto chicken salad is delicious straight from the bowl with a spoon (are you seeing a trend with me and chicken salad?!). You can also eat it:
- As a pesto chicken sandwich – try a croisant, baguette, or toasted sourdough.
- Over a bed of greens for a flavor packed salad.
- Scooping it up with your favorite crackers or parmesan crisps.
How to Store
Store your leftover pesto chicken salad in the fridge. According to the FDA, cooked chicken should be consumed within 3-4 days. Be sure to toss everything together before serving to incorporate any liquid that has separated.
More Chicken Salad Recipes
- Greek Chicken Salad
- Curry Chicken Salad
- Chinese Chicken Salad
- Avocado Chicken Salad
- Caprese Chicken Salad
Pesto Chicken SaladPrint Recipe Pin Recipe
- 1/2 Cup Pesto
- 1/4 Cup Greek Yogurt or mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 2 Cups Chicken Breast fully cooked + chopped or shredded
- 1/4 Cup Red Onion finely chopped
- 1/3 cup sun dried tomatoes diced
- Salt + Pepper to taste this will depend on how salted your pesto is
- Place everything in a large bowl and toss to combine. Taste, and add salt and pepper to your liking.
- Serve as a sandwich or lettuce wraps, and enjoy!
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- Nutritional information is based on 1 serving, if you divide this recipe into 5 servings: